Monday, June 8, 2015

The Dishwasher

Every night, my girls set and clear the table. I feel a little bit like a queen as I sit there and they take care of things. Well, a queen who cooks, and reminds them to get things they forget, like their own drinks. Every night, they put the dishes, cups and silverware in the dishwasher. Except for those things that need to go in the sink, where they land with a loud crash, but amazingly remain in one piece. And every night I have to completely redo what they’ve done.

One opens the dishwasher about six inches, does not pull out either rack and blindly puts things in the approximate area that they go. She argues when I tell her to fully open the door and all but refuses to pull out the racks. I’m not quite sure what sensibility this offends in her, but apparently it’s an important one. When I go to check what she’s done, I find plates placed diagonally or stuffed in a slot already taken by another plate; cups are sideways—until water is capable of bending, I don’t know why this even is an option for her; and silverware is upside down.

When I ask her about it, she simply smiles and apologizes as if she’s never heard my objections before now.

Another puts things approximately where they belong, but with no order to anything. This is slightly less aggravating, but even more puzzling, as she is the child who would line up her toys, rather than play with them, and excelled at ordering and categorizing things. To this day, off-center things, or things that don’t belong, annoy her to no end. Apparently dishes are the one exception to the rule.

I know most parents would say, “I’d kill to get my children to put stuff in the dishwasher at all, let alone the correct way,” but my girls have been doing this since they were four. They’re thirteen and sixteen now. I’m starting to think there’s no hope for them.

They ask me constantly why I don’t write YA. They’d like nothing better than to read about characters like themselves in situations they may face and to be able to have their friends read my work.

Why don’t I?

Ha! I write to get away from reality, not to rehash it. Maybe someday if they load the dishwasher correctly.

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